Wow, yesterday was the Boston Marathon of food (in my life, at least). My cousin Clement had his First Communion and their definition of a “dinner party” starts at noon and goes until last man standing.
I got in a run before, thankfully!!! I feel human again after some exercise! Just 2 miles (knee still bothering me, working up slowly) but my Garmin works in Europe! Coolio!
Church was boring (no offense) because I’m not Catholic (or religious, but I grew up going to church) and it was all in French that I could barely understand! The microphone was faulty and I was sitting behind a pillar, so we mostly whispered to my little cousin Milan (6) who constantly asked “Who is the man bleeding on the cross?” Explaining a higher being to a 6 year old is difficult. Oh and the church was beautiful, it has been in the town for hundreds and hundreds of years, I wish I knew the exact date!
After plenty of photos, we finally made it back to Bruno & Catherine’s house (up the hill from where I’m staying) for Clement’s luncheon. I thought that after the appetizers we’d have an entrée, a salad, and a cheese course/dessert. But boy was I wrong. I took plenty of pictures for you guys, so enjoy. Note. I didn’t photograph the appetizers (veggie platter, gruyere puffs, other delicious things).
SO. MUCH. FOOD. But so, so good. I ate way too much and then tried to run/dance it off by playing with my cousins and dancing with my uncles. We were seriously at their house for 10 hours. After the 5 hour luncheon, we all sat around (drinking champagne obviously) until eventually MORE food was put out! I had some leftover cheese, some couscous salad, and some random candy the kids found in a treasure hunt. The day was so fun and I loved just hanging out. The food culture is amazing; family time is food time and there was no rushing to finish or desire to hit the road early! Absolutely lovely.
Today, we worked in the vineyard for 2 hours doing manual labor. I love physical movement in the morning! It sets the day off right! After a morning in the vines and a great lunch, we headed 30 minutes over to Reims, the big city in the area. The Cathedral of Reims is famous because almost every French king was coronated there, as well as Joan of Arc ending one of her crusades here.
It was a drizzly day, but we walked around town, visiting cool shops and doing an olive oil tasting!! I bought the most amazing (and expensive) French olive oil infused with basil! French olive oil is so different from Greek or Californian olive oil, it is incredibly light and flavorful!!! We also munched on some pain au chocolate and macarons (not to be confused with macaroons, which are inferior) to counteract any exercise benefits we may have gotten.
Hitting the sack NOW because we’re leaving at 5:00am tomorrow for a roadtrip to deliver champagne & visit friends in Middelkerke, Belgium!